Stand Watie, a Cherokee from Indian Territory (Oklahoma), rose to the rank of brigadier general in the Confederate army during the Civil War, courtesy of the Park History Program.
The Park History program supports the WASO Cultural Resources Directorate, parks, and regional offices in all matters relating to the history and mission of NPS including the evaluation of proposed new parks. The program conducts research on national parks, national historic landmarks, park planning and special history studies, oral histories, and interpretive and management plans. The Park History website is currently under construction.
One feature of the new webpage will be information about an upcoming publication on American Indians in the Civil War (scheduled for publication in early 2013). A number of notable scholars—Indian and non-Indian—have written essays for this publication, which will be a major contribution to our understanding of American Indian involvement in the Civil War. Below is an abstract from that publication:
The American Civil War was one of the most momentous eras in American history. The war and its aftermath ended bondage and ushered in a new birth of freedom for four million enslaved people. Perhaps as many as 750,000 soldiers did not return home. A little known, but crucial part of the story was that more than 20,000 American Indians fought on both sides of the conflict. Many thought their participation would guarantee their survival, protect their lands, and enhance their autonomy. Instead, for them the post-war period was tragic. A reunited nation turned its vision towards westward expansion, overrunning Indian lands and decimating their populations.
Robert Sutton, Chief Historian and Deputy Federal Preservation Officer (FPO), at
202 354-2214 or Robert_Sutton@nps.gov